May 20, 2010
Smart to use Smart Numbers
Can't find the spare part? Not even sure what it looks like? Challenges like this can be simplified by using a smart numbering system, and linking pictures to inventory items in MAPCON Maintenance Software.
Nebraska Corn Processing, located in Southwestern Nebraska, is an ethanol plant that has recently gone through a shut down, a change of ownership, and is now up and running again. The new maintenance planner, Allan Peters, used MAPCON maintenance management software before at another ethanol plant where he used to work. He is now looking forward to running MAPCON Maintenance Software in a more efficient manner than before, starting with inventory numbering.
Using a smart numbering system, the workers will be able to identify spare parts much more quickly than before. Using a combination of 4 letters and 4 numbers, workers will know what they are looking for just by the number itself. An example is a bearing, which will be listed as BRNG-0001 or a small replacement motor which is MOTR-0005. Like parts will be stored together on shelves, so if the one you need is out, an alternate could be close by. Planning the parts on the work order, and having the letters in front will let everyone know what they need at a glance before going out to the job site and will eliminate wasted trips back and forth to the warehouse.
These four letters will become standardized, and over a brief period of time the workers will learn what each code stands for. The 4 numbers are just the next one in sequence to keep it simple, and parts can also be located by cross-referencing the vendor"s part number or the manufacturer"s item number.
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words
Using a digital camera, pictures will be taken, downloaded, and linked to spare parts in MAPCON Maintenance Software so workers know what they are looking for. Is it made of rubber or stainless steel? Is it short or long? Reviewing their list of parts and knowing what they need before starting the job will eliminate time spent wandering aimlessly through the warehouse looking for who knows what.
Allan is looking forward to jumping into MAPCON maintenance software and making his maintenance process more efficient. He can already foresee the benefits of using a combination of a smart numbering system and pictures, and can hardly wait to start realizing the cost savings of playing it smart.